As far as remaster albums go, the early Metallica albums are ones that are a little over due. With the Kill ‘Em All remaster improving the over all quality of the album, I looked forward to hearing what improvements they had made for Ride The Lightning and I was not disappointed.
Ride The Lightning is almost an unsung classic in the heavy metal world. The die hard fans will praise the record until they are blue in the face and rightfully so. But the casual listener usually over looks the record for more popular releases like Master of Puppets and And Justice For All. With exception of the previously mentioned Master of Puppets, this is perhaps the bands finest moment in terms of album recordings.
When you look at big hitters like For Whom The Bell Tolls, Ride The Lightning, Fade to Black and Creeping Death which take up the majority of the album, it is truly impossible to deny that this is an incredible record. Even the lesser tracks like Trapped Under Ice and Escape are of reasonably high quality, despite their lack of decent song writing. The riffs are a plenty, there are just as much memorable melodies and there is some magnificent lead guitar work. Very little to actually complain about here.
The original CD print of Ride The Lightning was actually of much higher standard than Kill ‘Em All so I would assume that this record really did not need remastered. But now that I have heard it, I really have noticed how dated the original ’80s CD print has become. The original sound was a little muffled and a tad muddy. The 2016 edition is crystal clear and has provided the band with a much needed kick up the butt. The four instruments have been given a little bit more power, specifically the bass and drums. Much like the Kill ‘Em All disc, Cliff and Lars have been given a more prominent role in the over all sound and it sounds excellent.
There are a little niggle or two in regards to the music but as far as sound goes, this is possibly the best CD version you can buy. Those in charge have cleaned up the music without compromising the over all quality and I couldn’t recommend it more.
Where to buy :
Track Listing :
- Fight Fire With FIre
- Ride The Lightning
- For Whom The Bell Tolls
- Fade To Black
- Trapped Under Ice
- Creeping Death
- The Call of Ktulu